Beyerdynamic DTX 71 iE Review

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Beyerdynamic DTX 71 iE
Reviewed May 2011

Details: Entry-level model from Beyer’s recently-refreshed IEM line
MSRP: $79 (manufacturer’s page)
Current Price: $50 from adorama.com
Specs: Driver: Dynamic | Imp: 12Ω | Sens: 104 dB | Freq: 20-22k Hz | Cable: 3.9’ L-plug
Nozzle Size: 5mm | Preferred tips: stock single-flanges
Wear Style: Straight down or over-the-ear

Accessories (3/5) – Single-flange silicone tips (3 sizes) and zippered soft carrying case
Build Quality (4/5) – The housings of the DTX 71 are all-plastic but the molding quality is very good. Strain reliefs are fully integrated and the rubbery cable is sturdy and fairly flexible. The 3.5mm L-plug and y-split are both very well-relieved
Isolation (3/5) – Good for a straight-barrel dynamic
Microphonics (3.5/5) – Bothersome when worn cable-down; nearly nonexistent otherwise
Comfort (4/5) – The DTX 71 is a lightweight straight-barrel in-ear and doesn’t require particularly deep insertion to sound its best. As a result it remains quite comfortable even for lengthy listening sessions

Sound (7.2/10) – The sound of the DTX 71 is mainstream in nature but quite good on a technical level and pleasant overall. The balance is skewed slightly towards the low end, with weighty and impactful bass that is nevertheless not quite as prominent as with the higher-end DTX 101. Bass depth is impressive and control is retained for the most part. If anything, the low end of the DTX 71 actually does a better job of staying out of the way than that of the DTX 101, appearing only slightly boomy next to tight-and-fast dynamics such as the RE-ZERO and Sunrise Xcited. While clearly not intended for analytical listeners, the DTX 71 manages to draw as much attention to the sub-bass than the mid-bass, which helps the midrange stay veil-free.

The midrange of the DTX 71 is slightly forward, falling just short of the low end in relative emphasis. The mids of the similarly-priced Xears TD-III are slightly more prominent while those of the Xears Resonance are more recessed. Clarity and detail are good though some of the more analytical earphones around the price point have an advantage here. Texture levels are quite good as well and the DTX 71 leans towards a slightly dryer, grittier sound compared to the TD-III. The tone of the earphones leans slightly towards darkness though there isn’t a significant lack of upper midrange emphasis. In fact, my two Beyerdynamic IEMs both boast impressive presence and smoothness across the spectrum.

Top end extension is moderate – similar to the Brainwavz M2 and Sunrise Xcape IE but not as impressive as with the RE0. Treble presence is quite good but the DTX 71 definitely holds a bias towards the midrange and low end. The presentation is competent – average soundstage size and good layering mean that the sonic cues are all laid out quite well for a dynamic-driver in the DTX 71’s price range. Part of the reason that the presentation is not a definite strong suit of the earphone is the average dynamics – the Sunrise Xcape IE, for example, is noticeably more adept at conveying softness and delicacy. The Beyer IEMs are both slightly shouty in nature, though by no means to a degree where the dynamics become a distraction.

Value (8.5/10) – The Beyerdynamic DTX 71 iE is a consumer-class earphone from a large Hi-Fi manufacturer. Expectedly, it does very little wrong both when it comes to sound quality and usability. More surprising is that the DTX is priced in accordance with its performance – something I’ve given up on when it comes to mid-level earphones from brands with a full-sized headphone focus. AKG, Grado, and even Sennheiser could learn a thing or two from the DTX 71 iE.

Pros: Lightweight, well-built, easy to live with; sound quality competent all around; less bass than DTX 101
Cons: Mesh carrying pouch is underwhelming; cable noise can be annoying with cable-down fitment


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About Author

Living in the fast-paced city of Los Angeles, ljokerl has been using portable audio gear to deal with lengthy commutes for the better part of a decade. He spends much of his time listening to music and occasionally writes portable audio reviews across several enthusiast sites, focusing mostly on in-ear earphones.

4 Comments

  1. huntington on

    Thanks for the reply Joker!

    I’m probably going to purchase a pair of EPH-100s off ebay, are you maybe aware if there are any chinese clones of this headphone, I got them at a decent price, $115 so hopefully they’re genuine.

    Thanks again!

    • ljokerl on

      Yeah, there have been reported counterfeits of the EPH-100. I would be very careful getting them at a large discount, though $115 doesn’t seem that low.

  2. huntington on

    Hey Joker!

    First off I have to thank you for the comprehensive IEM reviews, your site is probably the go-to IEM buying guide! Just recently got a pair of DTX 72 iE and was a bit disappointed previously owning CX 300-IIs until I lost them, namely the low end is noticeably weaker and even though it’s bit more detailed the overall impression of the low-end is quite bad. I know that this is the review for the DTX 71 iE which are now discontinued but I figured that the 72s should be quite a similar experience so I’m hoping you might get a chance to review them.

    P.S. Forgot to mention I manly listen to EDM.

    • ljokerl on

      I wouldn’t have recommended the DTX71 (and presumably the DTX72) for a bass-heavy sound coming from a CX300 unit and listening to EDM. It’s a relatively balanced-sounding earphone and it doesn’t seem like that’s what you want. You would have been better off with a DTX101/102, which is the bass-heavy version of these, or something with nice and deep bass, like the $15 Nuforce NE-600X from my Buyer’s Guide (http://theheadphonelist.com/earphone-buyers-guide/)

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